Sunday, September 16, 2012

How does it feel to be Seized by Darkness?

Autumn Jordan is visiting Tattered Pages today with her latest release! Sit up everyone and pay attention. She's brilliant! LOL

Thank you, AJ, for hosting me today.  I guess we’re here to talk about romance novels.

Why do millions of readers—I say readers because men actually makeup a good percentage of romance readers— head to their favorite book store each week and purchase books?  I know why I do. Because I want to be whisked out of my world and become engrossed in a story about the meeting and growing relationship of two people.
A plot is very important, but a story with the simplest of plots can become a best seller if the characters come to life. Bringing them to life is a writer’s priority and we do that through emotion.

In my new release, Seized By Darkness, I dug deep into the emotions I felt for my mother, my father and my children. Why those relationships? Because Seized by Darkness is about a young girl of sixteen, on the cusp of starting her life, disappearing.  She is kidnapped off the street she walked every day. I drew on a realm of emotions I would feel if I had experienced a similar circumstance. I actually sat in a dark sectioned of my basement, listening to silence, and thinking about my family and how my disappearance would affect them. They’d search. My mother, who is a sweetheart, would be broken hearted and my father who has always been the protector would feel as if he’s failed. And he wouldn’t know how to comfort my mom.

My chest tightened and I could barely breathe as my thoughts turned to my children.  I honestly don’t know if I could keep it together if one of them were abducted.

After some reflecting, I decided to begin Seized By Darkness with Nicole eight years after she was snatched. She now has a son from the Russian mafia monster that plucked her, as a virgin, from the trafficking mill and has kept her as his own. Nicole is strong, the way I hope I would be. She has never given up hope that she would be free and she’ll do anything  to have her life back and ensure her son will not grow into a monster like his father.

She is also fragile. Nicole hopes not, but wonders whether her family has forgotten about her.  Her faith has been broken. And she knows, without a doubt, that no man will ever look at her, much less love her, after she has been made a whore.

Enter U.S. Marshal William Haus. He is the man fairytales are made of. Strong, intelligent and has a heart the size of the Utah salt flats and just as warm. You thought I was going to say drop dead handsome, but you can see that he is, without a doubt, fine. But, Will has issues of his own, and as Nicole and he work to bring down the trafficking ring, his feelings for Nicole grow and he has no choice but to face his past.

Emotional? Yes, Seized By Darkness is filled with passion—mine.  
If you’re a writer, how do you discover your character’s emotions? And if you’re a reader, do you have any comments or questions? One lucky commenter will win a digital copy of Seized By Darkness. I’ll select a winner and post the name here tomorrow afternoon.  Good luck!

Seized By Darkness is available
from Amazon and B&N in both digital and print format.

To learn more about Autumn Jordon please visit:  



LisaRayns said...

This looks amazing!
I'm a writer and I sometimes draw my character's emotions from my past personal experiences. Sometimes, I just put myself in their position and really try to feel what they're feeling.
Thanks for the giveaway!

Toni Lynn said...

This book sounds amazing. As a mother, I, too, would be devestated should anything happen to my son.

Putting yourself in one's shoes, I think, is the only way to feel the emotion.

As a writer, finding the right word to describe that emotion is very difficult sometimes, even more so, trying not to repeat the words.

Good luck, Autumn!

Tiffany N. York said...

Trying to draw on similiar experiences/emotions is helpful, as is sometimes drawing on someone else's story. Talking to someone who has gone through something similiar can give the seal of authenticity as well, I think.

AJ Nuest said...

Thanks so much for visiting with me today, Autumn! Can't wait to read this one.

Autumn Jordon said...

Good morning, ladies. Thank you for taking the time to stop by today and comment. And again, thank you to AJ for hosting me.

I think Tiffney made an excellent point and I've actually used this in my ARC workshop. Try as we might, we can't pick up the all real heart-felt emotions that someone who has actually gone through the tragic experience. Interviewing those who have or reading interviews of those who have can give insight you'd never imagine.

I'll give you example. A home burns down and everything is lost, including antiques. You're first thought might be like mind and think your character because she treasured them and they can't be replaced. I spoke to a woman who went through this nightmare. She felt guilt. Why? Because the antiques were heirlooms, passed down through generations and entrusted to her. She thought of all the family members in heaven, frowning down on her.

Different, right? So, yes, interview. Thanks, Tiffany, for bringing up that excellent point. And thank you for the compliments on SDB.

Rachel said...

I can't wait to read this! I love trying to figure out what makes my characters tick, and from that, connecting with their emotions. For some characters, I can bring in personal experience, but it's actually also fun for the ones I can't.

Autumn Jordon said...

Thanks, Rachael. I hope you enjoy SBD.

I love research which includes interviewing people and my own characters. which. I could spend days.. no, weeks researching a subject, easily.

AJ Nuest said...

Oh my gosh, Autumn, that is brilliant. The guilt associated with the loss of heirlooms. You are so right. I never even thought of that. Great advice to interview folks who have been through an experience you are hoping to recreate. See? THIS is why you are such an outstanding author! Love it!

Vonnie Davis ~ Romance Author said...

Excellent post, Autumn. Writing emotion is hard for me. I never know if I'm getting it right. Although I often cry as I write a scene, I also know not everyone is as "weepy" as I. What pushes my sob button, merely slows down a reader. Writing fear also takes a special talent, I think. What a neat idea you had of sitting alone in a darkened area. I'm sure your senses kicked in. Good luck with your book!!

Autumn Jordon said...

AJ, You made me blush. Thank you.

And Hey, Vonnie! Great to see you here. You're right, not everyone feels or shows emotion the same way. When developing the personality of your characters, we need think how that personalty would react. If writers hear from editors that their characters are inconsistent, it probably means they didn't know their character enough and drew outside the lines of the character's personalty or we wrote multiple personalities.

Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Good luck in the drawing.

Lynne Marshall said...

You have certainly tackled a tough topic in Seized by Darkness. Hats off to you on that,Autumn!

And anyone who has read AJ's Jezebel's Wish knows she isn't afraid to tackle emotion either.

I think being a daughter, wife, mother, sister etc. helps a great deal when digging deep for emotion and I go to that well whenever necessary when writing. However, that doesn't automatically mean my interpretation will resonate with the reader. All I can do is hope I hit the mark. This is a tough business, isn't it?

Autumn Jordon said...

It certainly is, Lynne, but I'm so glad I'm in it. I'm doing what I love. There are those who can't say the same.

Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

AJ Nuest said...

Awww...thank you, Lynne for the lovely comment. And thanks to everyone who stopped by today to visit. What a great, supportive group of friends! I'm off now, to watch my daughter as she watches ET for the first time. LOL It's more fun checking her facial expressions since I know the movie so well. Hugs to all and Autumn, let me know about the winner. I'll post the name here! Hugs, everyone! Love ya!